Philippines raises Mayon volcano alert amid eruption fears

Alert level raised twice over the weekend

The Philippines yesterday raised the alert level on Mayon Volcano to level three, indicating that the volcano is exhibiting “relatively high unrest” with “hazardous eruption possible within weeks or even days”, according to the Philippine Institute of the Volcano and Seismology (Phivolcs).

In its latest advisory, which was issued at 20.00 yesterday, Phivolcs stated: “Mayon’s summit crater is now exhibiting bright crater glow that signifies the growth of a new lava dome and beginnings of lava flow towards the southern slopes.”

Alert level raised twice over the weekend

With ash from any sudden eruption potentially hazardous to aircraft, Phivolcs urged for civil aviation authorities to advise pilots to avoid flying close to the volcano’s summit. Based on the seasonal wind pattern, ash fall events may most likely occur on the south-west side of the volcano.

According to a ABS-CBN report quoting a Philippine Airlines spokesperson, Manila-Legazpi-Manila flights were being delayed by over an hour due to Mayon’s activity.

A phreatic (steam-driven) eruption occurred at the popular tourist attraction in central Albay province on Saturday, followed by two similar ones on Sunday. Phivolcs also recorded 158 rockfall events between 16.21 on January 13 and 19.25 on January 14.

A 6km-radius Permanent Danger Zone and a 7km Expanded Danger Zone have been enforced.

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